20 May, 2017
After all, Butler returning gives the team one of the best secondaries in the National Football League - leaving no room for Jason McCourty, as much fun as it would have been seeing him play alongside his brother. He was originally selected by the Titans in the sixth round of the 2009 NFL Draft and amassed 517 tackles, 13 interceptions, 91 passes defensed, six forced fumbles, five fumble recoveries and one sack. He had a solid, mostly healthy season in 2016 (14 games), with 69 total tackles, 12 pass breakups and two interceptions, but his $7 million salary for this year was prohibitive for the Titans. Left cornerback Joe Haden has battled injuries each of the last two seasons.
Williams, the Browns' fiery defensive coordinator, was a senior assistant defensive coach with the Titans in 2013.
"After taking my visit it became clear what is brewing within this organization in Cleveland", said McCourty.
Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reported the news and noted McCourty had dinner with team representatives Monday night.
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"I know how insane he is", McCourty said. In talking with Sashi (Brown) and coach Hue Jackson, it was obvious. The energy flowed through the entire building with everybody I talked to all the way to the players. "This was an easy decision for me".
McCourty told Cleveland.com's Mary Kay Cabot Wednesday that he is open to playing safety for the team, though he will start off at cornerback. And Williams won't hesitate to put plenty on McCourty's plate when he arrives for the start of OTAs next week.
In other news, the Browns announced they signed seventh-round draft pick Zane Gonzalez. Gonzalez was the 224th overall pick. He is the FBS all-time leader with 96 field goals and 494 points.